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Adventures in shopping—warehouse edition

Today Costco looked like it would have looked the day before the world of the The Walking Dead began, if people actually knew that the walking dead were coming.

Carts filled to overflowing and checkout lines six- and seven-deep.

And quiet, maybe because talking meant opening one’s mouth and that act seemed dangerous or ill-advised.

I was also there Monday when it looked like ghost town. Somehow between then and now, we have turned a corner. Maybe the hunches and wishes have collapsed under the weight of facts and statistics, but whatever the case, people are preparing for the siege.

I’m sure there are hoarders aplenty, but I think most people were preparing for the worst which, in light of recent events, seems like the right thing to do. Costco itself is like Sanitary Wipe City—when you enter you’re given an antiseptic wipe and another “greeter” sanitizes the handle of the shopping cart. (Of course purchasing those sanitizing objects for your own use is another matter entirely.) Are other stores—especially grocery stores—taking similar action? I hope so.

The good news is that for many products the supply chain seems to have caught up with the demand, but whether that balance holds is another matter. Hand sanitizer continues to be the new El Dorado—everyone’s heard about it but nobody has actually seen it.

Ditto rubbing alcohol, though Amazon does offer a large size if you're interested.

<—That and maybe a 55 gallon drum of aloe vera gel and a big stirrer (maybe a snow shovel) and you’re good to go right through the next zombie apocalypse with your own personal ocean of hand sanitizer.

Warning: if the many seasons of The Walking Dead offers any clues, hand sanitizer does not appear to be the long-range answer.

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